Tonawanda News

Local News

May 12, 2013

Tensions rising over private investigator in Town of Niagara

(Continued)

Tonawanda News — “It’s all about intimidation,” Halleen said.

Susan Koral, a workers compensation specialist for the town’s consulting firm Self Funding Inc., said that investigators are not often hired on compensation cases because they are expensive and do not often yield results.

“We don’t have people followed unless there is good cause,” she said.

However, if there is a strong belief that an employee collecting compensation is working an investigator will be hired, she said.

When an investigator is hired by the town, the consulting company and the town’s third party administrator — FCS Administrators, Inc. — would all have access to and could interact with the investigator.

Richards insisted the private investigator’s work has nothing to do with Clark or anyone other than the individual tied to the town insurance claim. He said the investigator’s presence is not related to any matters involving the work of state or federal authorities. 

“If Rob thinks (the investigator) is following him, then Rob is paranoid,” Richards said.

Richards claims Clark has it out for him and went to the FBI to get him in trouble.

“The only person I know being chased around here is me by him,” Richards said.

Richards admitted that the investigator did visit his automotive repair shop. The supervisor said the investigator dropped by to tell him residents had approached his car in an intimidating manner.

“He said the neighbors attacked him,” Richards said.

When asked about the same cars being spotted outside of Halleen’s store last week, Richards declined comment.

The town board held a work session Thursday night, before which the investigator submitted a report to the town.

Richards declined to comment on the investigator’s report when contacted by phone Friday, saying, again, that he will not discuss the ongoing investigation.

Both Clark and Halleen say they have never contacted the FBI, insisting investigators approached them first. 

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